The Factory

This project is part of the dissertation for the degree BFA in Digital Arts. It is a novel board game based on the artistic practice, motivation and lifestyle of Pop-Art master Andy Warhol. The players of this game take on the role of Warhol’s assistants and print artworks as it was done in Warhol’s artistic retreat, which was called ‘The Factory’. The goal of this project is to create an interactive artwork which introduces Pop Art to a wide audience. The research question of this project, the relevance of Warhol’s art and practice in the current age, is explored through directly engaging the audience with Warhol’s original production process. This practical project is accompanied by a written essay titled ‘Reviving Andy Warhol: A Contemporary Interpretation’. The game play video of this board game can be viewed here.

The base of this project is literary research about Pop Art, Andy Warhol and board game design. The first major element of ‘The Factory’ was to fully understand the process in which Warhol used assistants and silkscreens to produce his artworks. The second element and challenge was becoming an expert in board game design, in order to produce a functioning game. The next step in developing ‘The Factory’ was creating prototypes, of which the very first, but unsuccessful one, was based on games which I was already familiar with. A meeting with a game design expert and play testing sessions with board game designers and enthusiasts shaped three further prototypes. These testing sessions resulted in a functioning prototype which was developed into a final product.

The design choices of the components of ‘The Factory’ are mainly based on the interior of Andy Warhol’s Factory and the aesthetics of his artworks. Warhol’s factory was lined with silver foil, therefore silver paint and shiny foil have been applied to the hand-crafted game board, for a similar effect. Other game components, such as pawns, game money and action cards, are colourful and include simple symbols. The game also includes painting cards and silkscreens on which Warhol’s original artworks have been directly incorporated. The overall design choices were based on the consideration that the board game is an artwork which Andy Warhol could have created himself. | 2017